Bharti In­fratel Net Rises 19% on 3G, 4G Ex­pan­sion

Co ex­pects in­vest­ment by tel­cos in 3G, 4G net­works to grow fur­ther in com­ing year

The Economic Times - - Companies: Pursuit Of Profit - Our Bureau

New Delhi: Bharti In­fratel, In­dia’s only listed tele­com tower com­pany, said its fourth-quar­ter net profit rose 19%, as mo­bile car­ri­ers in­vested ag­gres­sively in 3G and 4G net­works, ex­pand­ing in­stal­la­tions three times amid surg­ing data con­sump­tion.

Con­sol­i­dated net profit for the three months ended March rose to .₹ 662 crore from .₹ 558 crore a year ear­lier, the unit of In­dia’s top 2 mo­bile car­rier Bharti Air­tel said in a stock ex­change fil­ing. Its rev­enue in­creased 7% to .₹ 3,162 crore. Op­er­at­ing in­come climbed 9% to .₹ 1,444 crore, while earn­ings be­fore in­ter­est and tax (EBIT) also rose 9% to .₹ 844 crore. The quar­terly profit beat bro­ker­age IIFL’s es­ti­mate of a 4.6% rise.

In­fratel’s board ap­proved a buy­back of equity shares for as much as .₹ 2,000 crore through an open mar­ket sale, sub­ject to share­holder ap­proval. The com­pany will of­fer a max­i­mum of .₹ 450 for each share, which trans­lates into 4.44 crore shares, equiv­a­lent to 2.34% of its equity. Bharti In­fratel shares de­clined 0.8% to .₹ 363.8 at the close on the BSE. The re­sults were an­nounced af­ter mar­ket hours. The com­pany ended the quar­ter with 88,808 tow­ers. Chair­man Akhil Gupta said there was a ma­jor roll­out of broad­band net­works along ex­pected lines, “with the num­ber of 3G and 4G in­stal­la­tions grow­ing over three times the pre­vi­ous year.” He added the trend would “fur­ther ac­cel­er­ate in the com­ing year” and Bharti In­fratel and In­dus Tow­ers would be in the best po­si­tion to cap­i­talise on this growth. Bharti In­fratel is a stake­holder in In­dus Tow­ers, the country’s lead­ing tower com­pany.

For the year ended March, firm’s net profit rose 20% to .₹ 2,382 crore and rev­enue climbed 5% to .₹ 12,308 crore. Op­er­at­ing free cash flow for the full year was up15% to .₹ 3,204 crore. The com­pany, which went pub­lic in 2012, sets up tow­ers on which tel­cos place their base sta­tions – de­vices that emit sig­nals to mo­bile phones.

Con­sol­i­dated net for the three months ended March rose to 662 crore from 558 crore a year ear­lier

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